Sean Lock: British comedian dies from cancer at 58

The comic was a panel show regular, featuring on '8 Out Of 10 Cats', 'QI' and 'Have I Got News for You'

British comedian Sean Lock has died of cancer at 58, his agent has confirmed.

He is best known for his appearances on UK panel shows such as 8 Out Of 10 Cats and 8 Out Of 10 Cats Does Countdown.

He is survived by his wife, Anoushka Nara Giltsoff, their two daughters and a son.

"It is with great sadness that we have to announce the death of Sean Lock. He died at home from cancer, surrounded by his family," his agent Off The Kerb Productions announced.

"Sean was one of Britain's finest comedians, his boundless creativity, lightning wit and the absurdist brilliance of his work, marked him out as a unique voice in British comedy.

"Sean was also a cherished husband and father to three children. Sean will be sorely missed by all that knew him. We kindly request that the privacy of his family and children is respected at this difficult time."

Lock was a regular on several UK shows, including the series 8 Out of 10 Cats, hosted by Jimmy Carr, on which he captained a team. He has also appeared on QI, The Last Leg, Have I Got News for You and The Big Fat Quiz of the Year.

Tributes to Sean Lock

A number of fellow comedians have tweeted their tributes to Lock following the announcement of his death.

Comedian Lee Mack, a friend of Lock's, said: "A true original both in comedy and life. I will miss him so much."

Never Mind The Buzzcocks captain Bill Bailey, who is due to perform in Dubai in 2022, described the news as "heartbreaking" in a tweet, writing: "He was a true original, a wonderful comic. All my thoughts are with his family."

Omid Djalili described Lock's death as a "devastating loss", saying he was "easily one of the funniest on and off the stage".

The Office star and comedian Ricky Gervais wrote: "Such sad news. RIP the great Sean Lock. One of the funniest, most influential comedians of a generation. A lovely man."

British-Malaysian stand-up comedian Phil Wang wrote: "So dreadfully sad. Sean Lock was one of the best. A rare comedian who could make you laugh like a drain if you’d never seen comedy before or had watched it every day of your life."

Richard Osman recalled working with Lock on 8 Out Of 10 Cats for more than 15 years, saying he "made [him] laugh so much and so often", adding that he was "a unique and brilliant comic voice".

Susie Dent, the lexicographer on 8 Out Of 10 Cats Does Countdown, wrote: "I wish I had the words to describe the exceptional man that was Sean Lock. But today I don’t, and I think he might have liked it that way."

Jon Richardson, who starred with Lock on 8 Out Of 10 Cats Does Countdown, wrote: "I idolised Sean as a comic long before I became a comedian myself and 10 years working alongside him didn’t diminish that in the least. An incredible comic brain and a truly unique voice.

"I’m devastated for his family today and sad for comedy that we have lost one of the very best. Undisputed, undefeated, carrot in a box champion. I will miss him."

Eddie Izzard wrote: "So sorry to hear this. Farewell Sean, you brought a wonderful comedic talent to the world and you will be missed."

Lock was a fan of Chelsea Football Club, and the team paid tribute to him on social media saying they were "saddened" to learn of his death. "Sean was a much-loved comedian, fan of the Blues and a regular at Stamford Bridge."

Jonathan Creek and QI star Alan Davies wrote: "Sad news about Sean Lock. Funny on stage, hilarious off. We met in 1988 right at the start of our stand-up careers. I hadn’t seen him in recent years as he quietly wrestled with illness but I feel very sad today for Anoushka and their children. RIP Locky."

Doctor Who star and comedian John Bishop wrote: "He was a brilliant comedian but more importantly he was a great person on so many levels. He will be missed hugely."

Comedian Ross Noble wrote that Lock was "a massive talent who made stand-up look effortless and approached his illness in the same no-nonsense way he approached life".

Updated: August 18th 2021, 12:38 PM
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